1. There will be times when you are fiercely proud of them and supportive of them, and there will be times when you resent them and feel as though you cannot forgive them. Both of these are perfectly okay.
2. Addiction is a disease. It chose your family, and that’s unfair, but it is not your fault. It is not the addict’s fault. No one asks to get cancer, and no one asks to become an addict.
3. You are stronger than you believe.
4. This does not have to define you.
5. You can love the addict while still holding them accountable.
6. Forgiveness is possible. It is not required, and it does not have a timeline, but it is possible.
7. You do not always have to take care of other people.
8. You do not always have to take care of yourself.
9. You don’t have to be ashamed.
10. Not everyone will understand your story. That doesn’t mean they are incapable of loving you and helping you through it. Don’t be afraid to tell the people who are important to you.
11. You will hear over and over again how important it is for a recovering addict to have support. You can choose not to support them, and you don’t have to justify that choice to anyone.
12. There are people who weren’t around for the bad days, but want to celebrate the good days with you as if it’s their success as much as the addict’s. It’s okay to tell these people they’re completely full of it.
13. If the addict is lucky enough to be receiving positivity and support in their recovery, you will sometimes feel left out or forgotten. But you haven’t been, I promise.
14. It’s okay to be angry. It’s okay to be frustrated. It’s okay to feel whatever you want to feel, because…
15. This is a time for you to recover, too.